A cyber attack against Norwegian bank DNB’s servers temporarily crippled the bank’s website on Tuesday morning. DNB said it was taking the attack extremely seriously and had reported the case to police, while hacker group Anonymous Norway reportedly claimed responsibility.
The assault is known as a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack, which basically means someone deliberately overloaded the bank’s server, reported Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK). The server is tricked into thinking many users are logging on.
“The website is partially down because of a DDoS attack, which means that there are log in problems for some of our customers,” said communication adviser Vidar Korsberg Dalsbø. “We’re working hard to get this solved and we believe we have localized where the attack is coming from.”
In an email to newspaper Bergensavisen, hacker group Anonymous Norway said it was behind the breach. Dalsbø would not comment on the claims, but told NRK the main part of the attack was coming from overseas. Shortly before 1pm he said the website was up and running again.
“We are looking at this case seriously and are going to report the crime to police,” he said. “It is very costly for us when the netbank is down, it paralyzes our business, and that is something we regard seriously. I expect out customers understand that this is not something we can do anything about.”
When customers tried to log on, they received the following message: “Hi. Sometimes things don’t go to plan, and right now we have an error. We apologize! Our best people are on the case. Feel free to follow the customer service forum for updated information. Foreign exchange is in the meantime still available.”
Other sites hit
DNB press officer Evan Westerveld told newspaper Aftenposten DDoS issues arose from time to time, but the systems usually manage to stop such attacks. He said other large Norwegian companies’ websites were also down, but would not mention names. Aftenposten reported other banks and insurance agencies including Nordea, Danske Bank and Gjensidige appeared unaffected, while NRK reported Gjensidige had experienced instability but they had not been able to get a comment.
E24 reported Sparebanken was also attacked, but managed to keep its website operational.